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tv   Martin Bashir  MSNBC  October 11, 2011 12:00pm-1:00pm PDT

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citizen whoholds an iranian passport and was arrested in new york is accused of working with members of an arm of the iranian guard corps to devise an international murder for hire scheme targeting to the united states. according to the complaint filed today in the southern district of new york, bob is alleged to have orchestrated a $1.5 million plot. >> it reads like the pages of a hollywood script, the impact would have been real and many lives would have been lost. they have no regard for their intended victims and citizens that might have been hurt or killed in the attempted assassination. >> nbc news's pete williams is following this story from detroit. good afternoon, pete. we know the state department
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regarded iran as being a state sponsor of terror since 1984. this is a ho rentous and evidence and manifestvation of the view. >> it's interesting that today at the news conference, none of the officials were willing to say this. they cent saying it was conceived, sponsored and direct and elements of the government. how high up in the government, either they aren't saying or they don't know. the broad outlines are clear the one you heard referred to by the attorney general was having conversations with members of this iranian force that the united states said terror operations around the world, they have these conversations in the spring of this year and they got the idea to try to either kidnap or assassinate the saudi arabiian ambassador to the
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united states. at some point he comes to the united states and goes to mexico and meets with what he thinks are representatives of a drug cartel on the theory that they are willing to do violent things for money. that person turned out to be an under cover u.s. law enforcement agent from the drug enforcement administration and from that point on, this was a sting operation and everything that happened was monitored by law enforcement. two sets of wiring money to a bank account totalling $100,000 and discussing how they might do it and setting a bomb off in a restaurant in washington. all those things were done as the u.s. law enforcement watched interactions with the under cover source. what the two from iran were willing to do was astonishing because they were willing to blow up as many as it took to assassinate the ambassador. >> this is remarkable and what's
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the thinking behind deploying a mexican drug cartel ? >> simply this was apparently the idea. he said that or at least in discussion with the iranians in iran that they had the idea if you are looking for somebody who will commit crimes that were mercenaries that would do something like this violent for money and the place to go would be members of a drug cartel . one interesting point that is not immediately clear, this one arrests and two people indicted was here in the u.s. he tried to fly to mexico and the therapies were tipped off. he came back to the u.s. september 29th. that's when he was arrested. he started talking within hours of his arrest and has been helping him day to day since he has been arrested. almost to the point where the
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charges were unsealed including making calls ba being to his contacts in iran. sort of like the telephonic version of wearing a wire where you record your conversations with the coconspirators. the government said he has been helpful. >> did he admit that iranian officials approved of the plan? >> yes. that's what he told the united states and the fbi during repeated interviews and they say he called his contacts back in iran. the members of the force and continued to talk with them. they said what are you doing? how come you haven't killed him yet? >> wow. pete williams, for the moment, thank you very much indeed. we are joined by our terrorism analyst evan coleman joining me by phone. good afternoon. what do you know about the men
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the justice department said were plotting the investigation. do you have intelligence? >> we only know so far the details that have been released. these are not publicly known from the iranian government, that being said, $100,000 wired to a bank account is not typically what you see in homegrown terrorist plots. that's not what you see from people who are amateurs. strongly suggest the involvement of a state sponsor here and somebody who had $100,000 to burn like this. there not too many people like that. even wealthy individuals are rare. that alone, that amount of money tells you something. >> the total figure is $100
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million. >> that's not something that individual or gruel groups do. one of the comments made in these homegrown terrorists is people are poorly financed or equipped. they had a lot of money to throw around. that does again the first signal that might have a state sponsor behind it. >> holder was very careful in particular in the use of language. they talked about elements and yet you know that they are part of the iranian islamic revolutionary guard corps and the irgc. this is a government organization and body, jnt it? >> it is. it's a government skbd government militia and it's fair to say as well there certain elements of the iranian government that are more hard lined than others and fair to say not everyone in the iranian government agrees with everything that they are doing.
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that being said, this is not some kind of a military unit. this is an agency that controls the resources. they are very, very well financed and has the kind of money for this. everyone was aware of it. it's a dramatic step we talked about in the past and the possibility that they might be planning acts of terrorism. those fears largely subsided without any notice. the war in iraq and nothing happened, people figured if iran is not going to strike us now. when are they going to strike us? this is concerning. it's also concerning because al qaeda doesn't have $1 million to throw into the terrorist plot. if you have a million like this,
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there is a decent chance you might be successful. the idea that they were willing to contract it out is very interesting. it shows how different this plot is from what we are used to seeing. >> we are hearing from the president spokesman that he regards this as a childish story. that's a predictable response. >> i think it always guess into what this plot was. the iranians if they wanted the to be traced back to iran would have had operatives to carry it out. they were trying to outsource and have somebody else do it and there would be no fingerprints or very few. i don't think the government is eager to claim responsibility for this whether or not they are responsible. look, it wouldn't change and it's no change from the rhetoric
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and no change from the iranian government. that being said, if there is evidence linking the force to this. i don't think there is a credible denial. if they were involved in this, the government bears responsibility and that leads to very serious foreign policy questions. not just law enforcement, but for the obama administration in how to move forward. we have been trying to at least be willing to work with the folks and negotiate. whether it's over the nuclear issue or with this, the government doesn't seem willing to cooperate in any way. it also raises questions for policy in iraq and afghanistan moving forward. these are two country where is we have enormous presence still left over. these are two countries where the government and the revolutionary guard will be specific and has been accused of fomenting insurgent activity and building and transferring
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weapons to insurgents, specifically that target service men. >> security analyst, thanks for joining us. we are going to bring in chief white house correspondent chuck todd. on the day when we were expecting to be talking about this big republican presidential debate, this story has stolen the headlines. we understand from the white house that the president was informed about this in june. we are hearing that the american government may take some form of action as early as today. you can fill that in? >> we are trying to figure out where they want to go. is this financial for now or something more serious that are outside the bounds of simply financial sanctions or going to the united nations? that's unclear at this point, but what it brings to the forefront and people who follow this closely do know this, but a lot of the american public may not realize the rivalry that
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there is in the arab world and the mideast between the saudis and the iranians. in many cases they get split between the two sides. i think that this plot and the danger it has for the iranians were isolated as it is. this will only further serve the u.s. interest potentially in trying to unite the more moderate arab world in isolating iran at this point. a moment like this attempt, it could serve as a -- you don't want to say something almost just this tragic event that could serve as an impetus to move more aggressively in getting iran isolateed from the rest of the middle east. >> this was obviously a joint government exercise involving the united states and the mexican government. have you got information or intelligence on how that was organized? >> you don't. i don't yet.
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when you come to the saudis, there is a lot of defense and intelligence sharing that we have with the saudis at this point. >> let's hope it happens with the counter terrorism center. that in itself led to uncovering skpk able to thwart the plot. >> do stick around. we are watching a live event in new hampshire and we are about a minute away. chris christie's endorsement for president, i guess, chuck, this feels like a similar choreography to when tim pawlenty endorsed romney before the last debate. >> cheer to it on a debate day.
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look, you talked to some communications professionals and they argue why not wait until the day after the debate at this point? it guarantees that you have the next story no matter what happens. a little color to pick up the following. mitt romney and ann romney flew down on saturday and personally visited with the christies. they asked for the endorsement and secured it and raced to put this together. >> just another question. about 80% of the iowa electorate as you know are evangelical or tea party faithful. do you think this endorsement will affect their likelihood to support mitt romney? >> i don't. this is a big deal for mitt
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romney and a windfall financially. at a time when there is clearly a yearning -- >> i will have to stop you because mitt romney and chris christie are approaching. stay with us. . >> thank you, guys. good to see so many friends here today. thank you. it's an honor to be joined today by chris christie. i have behind me a man who is an american hero and reigns in the successes of the government. he's a hero in republican circles. he's a man who has been forth write and clear in the excessive spending and do his best to get new jersey working again. he is a man who has a following of a lot of folks across the country. when he indicated a willingness to join the team, i couldn't
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have been more happy. he calls for higher taxes and people wondering what the future might be. a lot of folks in the middle class wonder figure they can make it in new jersey. people in the state have a different view about the future. i am please and proud to announce chris christie joining our team. thanks, chris. >> i'm here in new hampshire for a simple reason. america cannot survive another four years of barack obama and mitt romney is the man we need to lead america and we need him now. that's why i'm here. if you look at governor romney's experience in the private sector, running businesses and going in there and telling the people the truth about what needed to be done and coming up with the plan and look at his experience as an elected
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official, we know he brings the best of both to what we need. he brings the great private sector experience and the experience as governor of massachusetts knowing how government works. not a legislator trying to figure out how to use executive power, but an executive who used the power and use it to make american lives better. that's why i'm endorsing mitt romney for period of the us. as republicans, our number one goal this year has to be to preserve our american way of life. that american way of life was built by enterpriseship and was built by allowing the unleashing of american spirit and american inventiveness on the economy and growing a bigger and bigger pie.
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the biggest difference between mitt romney and the president of the united states. the president of the united states unleashed his campaign strategy to divide america and tell those who are not doing well and who are scared that the pie of america is only so big and if you want more, we have to take it from others. i know that mitt romney believes that the american pie can be grown bigger and can be an infinite size because of the nature of american ingenuity and effort and character. that's what this election is all about. the american people will decide they want to believe in american optimism over american division. they want to believe in somebody who believes america's future can be greater and not someone who is trying to divide an ever-shrinking pie among the american people. so it's been really in the end an easy decision for me.
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i know that america needs a new course and i want it to be with the person who i believe will be the best person to lead america on that course and that's governor romney. i am thrilled to be here today, mitt. thank you very much. >> thank you. >> thank you, chris. let me turn to questions you have. mark? >> on thursday, governor perry was introduced on the past and perry campaigned to prove that. what do you think the tactic of imputing someone's religion from governor romney? you have been silent and what do you think about what happened on friday? >> my thaws about this are the same on those folks in new jersey who disparaged in both parties. my decision to appoint a muslim judge. these types of religious matters have nothing to do with the quality of somebody's ability to
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lead. you have to evaluate their record and character and integrity. not religious beliefs, but based on who they are and i think that any campaign that associates itself with that type of conduct is beneath the office of president of the united states. >> mark, governor perry selected an entered to introduce him who used religion and he said he would endorse governor perry and not support me. governor perry said that introduction hit it out of the park. i don't believe that that kind of divisiveness based on religion has a place in this country. i believe in the spirit of the founders. when they suggested in crafting this country that we would be a nation that tolerated different faiths and different places of religious diversity and that respect, they embodied in the constitution itself. in article six of the
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constitution saying a religious test would not be part of selectioning a candidate. i believe in the spirit of the embodiment. i would call upon governor perry to repudiate the sentiment and remarks made. >> i don't know what governor perry knew when. if not, thank you. >> you spoke about leadership and compromise. over the course of his career had to bring people together to get things done. he brought folks together turning around businesses and creating jobs. you don't do that by dictating. you form consensus and give a
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clear vision about where you need to go. you governor understands and you need to discuss this. in a country like ours, you never compromise your principals. you do understand that you can't get everything you want. usually there is a good space between getting everything you want and compromising principals. that's a space i operated in and the same space governor romney will operate in when he is president romney. >> the united states senate is about to vote on legislation that enacts your proposals on china and trade. do you support the bill that would impose sanctions on china if they do not float their currency. >> i will have to look at the piece of legislation to see which i agree with and which i disagree with. if i am president of the united states on day one, i will designate china as a currency
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manipulator to apply tariffs on an unfair basis. as a result of having stolen intellectual property or currency manipulation. i will take a look and see what came of it and people wonder are you concerned about trade and the answer is yes. i like free trade. i want free trade and other nations of the world. i proposed a higher level and more free trade than we have under the wto. i don't want people to cheat. china has been cheating. it has been to the disadvantage of american jobs. we keep talking about that and not doing anything about it. i will if i'm president. >> i have been clear on where i stand on a federal level and i'm opposed to it. we shouldn't have a one size
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fits all program for the country. they have the opportunity to make a decision about what works best. i will tell you this. any attempt to try to see what the president has done with his plan is completely intellectually dishonest. governor romney did not raise one tax in doing what he did to approve the health care system in massachusetts. i'm proud of him for doing what he believes is right. it may not be right for new jersey and montana and california, but those governments will make that decision. do not try to equate what happened in obama care with what governor romney did in massachusetts. the president is raising taxes over and over again to pay for the plan he still won't pay for. what governor romney did was what he believed was responsible to allow people to have access to health care. all the governors should have the opportunity to make that on
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their own and should not allow people to try to be disingenuous about what governor romney did to compare that to federal health care legislation supported by the president. intellectually dishonest to do that and i will not let them compare what governor romney did in massachusetts to what was done here. when he gets on the stage this fall, he is going to make clear how america would look different and better with mitt romney as president. >> i don't believe they were aides and consultants. the one person he should have talked to that he never did was me. if he had, i would have told him that the plan would not work. we can't afford another $1
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trillion in federal spending. one of the first acts i will take is direct them to grand a waiver from obama care in all 50 states and go on to make sure we repeal and replace it with the model i described in michigan about two or three months ago. i'm the only candidate that has not spoken about repealing and describing what i would put in its place. i have a plan to do so. >> what action of governor romney makes it most important. >> i think the biggest reason why i want to support governor romney is i believe he's the best person to articulate republican values and defeat barack obama in november of 2 -- 2012. he has shown people he is willing to put a plan forward and talk about the plan and answer questions about his plan. he laid out the most detailed
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economic plan of anybody in the race and has been willing to stand behind it. as you heard him mention, he went to michigan and laid out a plan of what he would do with health care in america as opposed to what the president has done. this is not someone who just is deciding to run for president off the back of an envelope. he just wandered in and said this seems like a good idea. this is somebody who has thought and listened and planned for a good long period of time about what he would do if he was given the honor of being the president of the united states and the responsibility of being president of the united states. i said many times, people who run for president of the united states think in their minds i think i can win and i hope i'm ready. that's what the president of the united states did for four years ago. they are acting irresponsibly. mitt romney said i hope i can win, i know i'm ready. that's what the american people see this november and why they elect him president of the united states.
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>> a major endorsement for the mitt romney campaign just hours before tonight's debate. he described chris christie as an american hero and chris christie said that he believes he is the man to lead the country forward. i am joined by chuck todd again and msnbc david corn. let me start with you. what is your immediate take away from that. in describing chris christie as a hero, he wasn't aware of the fact that unemployment in new jersey is 9.4%. >> i was just checking that on my smart phone. three points above the national average. chris christie's own numbers have not been very popular with the public sector. he has been a controversial and conflict-causing governor. because he goes after the
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unions, he has a big fan base amongst republican funders and the brothers and others. that will be good in terms of mitt romney gathering up more books. what i'm thinking is that rick perry is looking at this going oy. this debate tonight was going to be his chance to try to get back in the ring and back on top of the horse that he jumped off of in the previous debates. now there is an aura of inevitability, the campaign strategy that got tougher with chris christie's endorsement preparing to elbow his way back in. >> you mentioned the finances and you know that charles schwabb and the woke brothers were all pleading. do you think this endorsement means that there vast immense amounts of money will now push straight into mitt romney's
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covers? >> whoever is the republican nominee will have gobs of money not just coming in -- are trying to persuade christie. >> this was the first addition for vice president. chris christie did a good job. if you need an attack dog, he seems to be willing to do it. he was look with adoring eyes, if he has a chance of being on the ticket and he doesn't want to be, he has swayed with the funders and other people and i'm sure you can get a lot of them behind. really there is nowhere else for the money to go and most of them want to play to be in the game. >> what do you think this does to rick perry? >> it puts pressure to have to start with romney yesterday. not just at the debate, but i think you are going to see television ads and the attack ads on romney begin senior
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rather than later. i think you will see it in the next week or two. we are less than 90 days away from iowa. herman cain success able to rally a lot of conservative votes. he has issues to deal with to rally that. you will see a contrast campaign against romney go quickly. you were asking about where does this big money go? how does romney take advantage of this now as opposed to having to wait? one way now. the super packs have one. you will see the romney super pack to respond to the perry attack ads. romney is going to have an outlet to go find that money that has been sitting there waiting for christie and see if he can get that money short-term
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into the super back as well as long-term. are do you think that with christie's endorsements, the issue of romney's personal religious beliefs will be a personal issue? >> i never thought they would be a huge issue, but it's sitting there. >> where else does rick perry go? >> there other places to go as far as romney's conservative credentials. that is where he wants to go. he wants to make the case that he's not a true blue conservati conservative. look what he did with health care and when it came to abortion. he has been on both sides of the issue. the religion stuff is they will deny they ever were. there were supporters who did the whisper campaign. we know what happened in south
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carolina in 2000 between bush and cane. does it stop romney? does romney have to deal with this again at some point? probably. he is probably going to have to do another speech like he did in december of '07 like kennedy in 60. there a lot of people, particularly on the east coast who are just less familiar with the form on faith and as they get introduce and maybe in a negative way, romney is going to feel compelled to have to talk about it in a different way in the positive. >> indeed just now at the press conference, romney talked about asking perry to disassociate himself from the dallas minster who described mormonism as a cult. >> i thought that was fascinating and this has been a different romney. on one hand he is trying to run a front-runner campaign and he is fraj skpil he knows it. he realizes perry is wounded
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right now. he had no problem saying yeah, he chose this person and there has been a person about whether he chose this person or not. romney decided yes he did on his own. the perry campaign said the voters people picked this person to introduce regardless, you heard both say perry's job is to repudiate the endorsement and the romney campaign, they know perry is wound and they want to make him own the cult comment and the bigotry stuff. >> go ahead. >> the interesting thing here martin is the perry campaign doesn't have to do a lot to whip up the mormon issue. you have evangelical who is are doing it for them. if you watched on "hardball" last night, pastor jeffress there was and he is not running away from this. he believes he is right.
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>> to be fair to pastor jeffress, he was defining the difference on theological basis. >> it doesn't matter what his definition of cult is. any evangelical voter who cares about this will get the message from somebody, doesn't have to be from the perry campaign directly. it will be part of this campaign whether or not perry actively takes out ads or whether it comes up again at a values voter summit. i don't think we will be able to test this as a proposition to the ilpact until you see the voting turn out in iowa and elsewhere. >> that press conference, don't you think there was a sense of optics if you like with this roman catholic governor alongside mitt romney the mormon? >> we are seeing a split here between the establishment republicans which both mitt romney and chris christie represent in terms of
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backgrounds and sensibilities and their policies and the tea party/social conservative grass roots base that overlaps t but has differences. you are going to see this again and again, not just on the religious issue, but on spending issues and issues of temperament. the tea party people want somebody out there who is going to rip obama to shreds in a very emotionally satisfying way for them. that's not really chris christie's or mitt romney's mo. that's why michele bachmann and donald trump went up and down and same with herman cain. there was a split that is going to keep manifesting all the way until there is finally a definitive front-runner and delegates. you will see it play out in the religious and policy issues. >> i want to put to you the question that was raised
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suggesting that this was an audition for vice president. you and i know that last week chris christie said anybody looking at me knows i would never make a vice president. >> first of all, it's amazing how many people said they never wanted to be vice president and ended up on a ticket number one. that said, the way christie ruled himself out does strike me as less interested in the number two slot. some folks would like to believe. what does he need to satisfy and is he going have to name a protestant and not have a roman catholic? there is an argument for that, the chris matthews view of what
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romney is going to have to do to shut this conversation down in the republican party. is he going to pick somebody enforce the message which is have somebody who is going to be the blunt speaker and the red made they would like to see against president obama. in that case maybe kristi does make more sense. it will be how if romney is indeed the nominee, everything makes it look as if this was a train leaving the station. >> it is an odd thing to watch and when we have seen this before, a rally around somebody big and they fall apart. you have a lot of work to do.
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. tonight's debate is supposed to focus on economic issues, but little doubt the discussion will not be restrained. consider the mormon issue dogging mitt romney after perry supporter robert jeffress called the religion a cult. one of the big stories, he's got the chair to prove it. seated tonight between mr. romney and mr. perry. mr. cain is learning with a brighter spotlight comes greater scrutiny. having to defend with criticism west who described cain's crack pipe and harry belafonte who called him a bad apple. here is mr. cain responding very much on the offensive.
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>> i do find it offensive. let me respond to professor west first. that's the difference between someone who spent their in academia and someone who spent their in the real world. i have been in the real world. he is in academia. he is on the symbolic stuff. as far as harry belafonte came in, i left the democrat plantation a long time ago. all they try to do when someone like me and i'm not the only black person out there that shares these conservative views, the only tactic they have to try to intimidate me and shut me up is to call me names and this sort of thing. it simply won't work. >> mr. cain proving he is still his abc of identity revealed in his book. american first, black second and conservative third.
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msnbc contributor and editor along with politics and throughs week and the daily beast. before we get to the topics, chris christie endorsing mitt romney. how big of a boost do you think that is? >> it shows that the establishment that north eastern republicans are dyinging and they are all consolidating behind romney. it's the natural endorsement for christie. he presides over . >> the establishment candidate is predictable. >> they are both from the northeast and romney is the wall street establishment guy and this is setting up to be the establishment versus the base and christie is on the establishment edge. >> at the debate tonight, candidates are allowed to ask questions and mitt romney's face was the source of a firestorm being called by a pastor who
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associated the mormonism with a cult. i assume you think this issue is going to arise tonight? >> i certainly think that the moderators will see to this. the question will be, will perry be prepared? we have seen in past debates where there is a question he should be prepared and he bifs. it will be fascinating to see if he is ready to repudiate or fudge it and have an explanation for this. he should definitely prepare himself. >> mitt romney asked rick perry to disassociate himself to the comments and he are hearing from rick pery that he refuses to do so. >> this is a sticky situation for perry to be in. you have got the evangelical
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appeal to grass roots evangelicals, a lot of them will admit being uncomfortable with. the searn baptist church met with romney in the past and kicked the tires and perry has to go forward carefully on this and besides, perry is not a guy who likes to admit he is wrong on anything. >> herman cain is say major player in this field. he is getting a lot more attention, but will he be able to stand up to the scrutiny when he uses phrases like the democratic plantation which as you know is highly sensitive. >> and his black walnut is flavor of the month. he hasn't shown much substance. herman cain is the reason that rick perry has to be careful on the mormon question. cain represents that person who is not afraid to be out there with his faith. if perry walks back even a step
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from that, cane is there to fill that in. the problem cain has that has shown zero substance on issues and he doesn't know a lot about foreign or domestic policy. >> 999 is panned by economists and conservatives because it's an added tax without a plan to repeal the current income tax. >> he is doing well in the polling. >> absolutely. for the same reason donald trump was. he was out front and willing to be critical and say what's on top of his head and projects that anger at the deadbeat poor that i think is fueling the tea party. >> you wrote some months ago about rick perry, the governor may be a rodeo clown, but when it comes to campaigning, he has a long, proud, and undefeated history with savvy andy and respect for experts and awesome ability to stay on message. given your assessment, why has he been so bad low in the
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debates. sorry to throw your words back at you. >> it's true. he has in texas and in the past has this reputation where he'll say the most outrageous things, because he has a serious campaign team who will jerk him back into line when it is, you know, when it is time -- crunch time. now, a presidential campaign lasts a lot longer and i talked about that in the piece, which is that you're not sure kind of whether he can do the marathon here. i mean, it's a big difference to have to stay on message for the length of a texas gubernatorial race and to stay on message for an entire presidential campaign. but that said, he does the not surround himself by kind of seat of the pants, you know, if it feels good, do it campaign operatives. these are people obsessed with social research and things like that, so they're not as crackpot as you would imagine them to be. >> michelle cottle and joann reid, thanks so much for joining
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us. >> thanks, martin. more on religion and politics when we clear the air. we'll be right back. gary... he hung up. ...why do we have so many a's in our name? so we're listed first in the phone book. ya know, gives us an edge. you know fedex can, give us an edge. how? well, fedex ships auto parts from factories around the world, they clear em through customs, and that'll help us fix cars faster. great idea. you know you got a bright future here at aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa... [ male announcer ] supply chain solutions. fedex. solutions that matter. degree deodorant with motionsense and...silver high heels. you should probably try this. what is it? degree deodorant. the more you move the more it works. ♪ [ sniffs ] yep. it's working. [ male announcer ] get low prices every day on everything you need to stay fresh. like degree deodorant with motionsense, only $3.83. backed by our ad match guarantee. save money. live better. walmart.
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it's time now to clear the air. and although tonight's republican presidential debate is expected to focus on the economy, there's little doubt that the subject of religion will also likely emerge, particularly after one southern baptist the minister introducing his friend rick perry suggested that more monoism monism is not religion. >> mormonism is not a religion, it's always been considered a cult by the mainstream of christianity. >> two of the eight candidates on the stage this evening are actively practicing mormons, deriving their smith from joseph smith jr. who founded the religion.
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its members were heavily persecuted, moving first from new york to ohio, then on to missouri, eventually settling in illinois. but there, in 1844, mr. smith, who coincidentally was running for president at the time, was attacked and killed in jail. that incident alone clearly demonstrates why this latest outburst of religious intolerance should not be tolerated by anyone, even if it is to their own political advantage. one of the more interesting contrasts between the united states and the united kingdom is the way politicians regard their personal faith. in britain, there's an established church where bishops sit in the upper house of parliament, where the angleton church plays a role in everything. and yet politicians generally say very little about their personal faith. indeed, tony blair's spokesman, when asked about the former prime minister's religious beliefs, rebuffed the question saying, "we don't do god."
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now compare that with the united states, a nation whose very constitution prevents the establishment of a national religion. what do we find? politicians who never stop talking about their religious convictions. mitt romney can be justifiably criticized for implementing health care reform in massachusetts and then trying to disown it when he runs for president. jon huntsman may find it difficult to attack president obama's foreign policy, because that same president gave him the best job of his career as u.s. ambassador to china. but if the constitution is our guide, then tonight, let's not do god, let's go governing. thank you very much for watching. dylan ratigan's here to pick things up and take us forward. dylan, what's on the agenda? dylan, where are you? >> i'm right here. i'm listening, but the wire's not working. i can't even hear you. it's good you work in the room right next to me. it's nice to see everybody and thsh


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